Conservative Serbia to get first openly gay prime minister

Vucic is seen during the news conference on Thursday

Brnabic, who is not officially affiliated with any party, told RTV last week that the president has "a certain role as a mentor to the prime minister, at least in the first few months".

So the appointment of Ana Brnabić as Prime Minister is huge news for visibility in the Balkans.

She tells state Tanjug news agency: 'If elected in parliament, I will run the government with dedication and responsibility and I will do my job honestly and with love'. This is not a defeat for the Serbian Progressive Party, nor for anyone else, but an idea to find the best solution.

Brnabic will be the first woman to head the Serbian government, and the country's first openly gay (lesbian) prime minister. The first openly gay woman to be picked to lead a government in southeastern Europe, she has dealt with worldwide organizations and foreign investors but holds little influence.

Her appointment into government a year ago was hailed by human rights groups as historic for the country whose gay community continues to face discrimination, harassment and violence.




Brnabic's nomination is considered Vucic's apparent turn toward the West amid strong pressure from Russian Federation to maintain its influence in the region.

"I told her 'I'm interested in what you can do, and I know how professional and hardworking you are", Vucic said on August 8 previous year. The British-educated Brnabic, a marketing expert, had worked for US companies before she assumed her Serbian government job. Vucic is convinced she will "show respect toward those parties she expects to support her, and work on Serbia's betterment". The conservative opposition Dveri group, close to the Serbian Orthodox Church, said Brnabic was obviously appointed under Western pressure.

Vucic also announced the continuation of the current policy of reforms.

Vucic, who was the prime minister before his election as president in April, had been widely expected to appoint a loyalist to maintain control of the government even as he moved into the largely ceremonial presidential position.

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